The British Isles and Beyond
  • 377 members

Code of Conduct

This information was last updated on December 9, 2022.

The priority of the administrator(s) of the Collins project is to protect your privacy and the confidentiality of your personal data. Protection of your personal information supercedes any project goals.

Email the project administrator at if you have concerns about the way your data is being handled.

Starting May 25, 2018, project administrators have NO access your account settings (called "Minimal Access") by default. In order for the project to be able to assess your results fully, members will need to grant "Limited Access" or better to their accounts. This is described in the project FAQ.

The project administrator made a decision in May 2018 to make the results visible only to project members. There were several reasons for this:

-- New regulations from Europe in 2018 have raised our consciousness of the obligation to protect the private data of our project members. Privacy regulations are expected to tighten in the future, not become more relaxed.

-- FTDNA was concerned enough about the privacy regulations to take down their related websites YSearch and Mitosearch even though users freely uploaded their data to those sites. World Families also shut down its passive project management operations, with its public display of data.

-- No matter how user friendly the FTDNA website settings become, some members who do not want their data publicly displayed might inadvertently Opt In to publicly share out their data. Locking the Y DNA results will prevent that.

-- The administrator has no desire to be the middle man should external agencies try to scrutinize the project data in ways the original testers had not intended.

-- The administrator would rather have complaints about data being too private rather than not private enough.

We do not discuss whether a particular individual is in the project or not or if someone from a contemporary famous family or lineage is in the project or not.

The project does not make public any member lists or any files of member identities/contact information with Y results.

We do not publish or pass on your name, email, or other private information to other project members or anyone else.

If you decide to leave the project, all information about you is removed from the project and from relevant project files administrator(s) keep on personal computers.

If you are not the tester but are monitoring the kit of the tester, the email you contact the project administrator(s) by must be the primary email on the account. Your name must be listed in the middle name field of the Contact Information (e.g., C/O Jane Jones) so your name is visible through the administrative interface. Otherwise we will not answer questions about the kit or about its matches.

FTDNA Contact Information must be set up as described in the FAQ. If you contact us with questions about a particular kit number and your name and email are not represented on the account so we can easily identify you in our member roster, then we cannot answer your questions. Kits with improperly set up Contact Information put present and future project administrator(s) at greater risk of violating privacy policies.

The FAQ page describes the difference between the FTDNA website and the external project website and the differences in project participation levels. The project no longer automatically publishes on the project website the data of individuals who qualify as Expert Level Project Participants - the second participation level. Those members must give their written permission for the use of their anonymized data on the project website. When their written permission is given, they are assigned PROJECT MEMBER numbers separate from their FTDNA kit numbers, for use on the project website. Their data is tagged with those numbers. See the project FAQ on granting that permission.

(Also called Investigative Genetic Genealogy Matching, or IGGM). Under the sharing options in your Account Settings, you can choose whether or not to make your data available to match Law Enforcement data.

To adjust your LE match setting:

See external help: LE Matching Sharing Option.

However, with a search warrant or subpoena, law enforcement can search FTDNA data. FTDNA cannot refuse legally valid requests without facing obstruction of justice charges. It does not matter whether you have opted out of sharing your data with matches and projects or not. With a valid legal request, law enforcement can request data beyond what is ordinarily available to FTDNA users.

The only way to make certain law enforcement can never scrutinize your data is to never have a DNA sample stored with any lab and to never shed or leave your DNA in public places.